Tag Archives: holiday

Emperor’s birthday: island holiday

Emperor’s birthday: island holiday
Emperor’s birthday: island holiday

Flashback to February 2022:

Japan, it surprised me to learn, gifts its citizens with more national holidays than any other country. Perhaps these enforced rest days present a remedy to the workaholicism? Unlike USA holidays, they do not confine themselves to long weekends but pop up unashamedly on Tuesdays and Wednesdays with nothing but paid leave to make up the difference.

Facing one such holiday in the middle of the week (in honor of the Emperor’s birthday), I decided to test the island bus system on a day trip to the opposite shore. Living minutes from Tokunoshima’s major port, I drink in first-class views of the surf on my daily commute, but trundling north soaked me in our magnificent mountains.

Read the rest of this entry

Drawing Nearer to Thee: 2019 Christmas Weddings

Drawing Nearer to Thee: 2019 Christmas Weddings

Graduation, Christmas, weddings – December in South Africa has it all!

The end of this year – and the decade! – marked the conclusion of my first full year in South Africa. Twelve months ago, I never could have predicted that I would be flying to Cape Town for a wedding, or applying to a masters program in African studies, or joining a family reunion at the same farm where Judy and I reveled in fresh-made dairy last year.

All of these events and more impressed on me the greatest blessing of my Peace Corps service: becoming like family with the people here.

Read the rest of this entry

So Peaceably Ordered: Peace Corps Jargon Decoded

So Peaceably Ordered: Peace Corps Jargon Decoded

While away in Western Cape, I was marveling about the blooming aloes at Talitha’s wedding venue, lamenting their beauty compared to the plain janes lining my host family’s property…only to discover, on my return, that the aloes at home are blooming, too!

After a cascade of often unexpected opportunities for travel this past year, it’s been my joy to discover the tiny treasures of spending time closer to home.

When a Peace Corps Volunteer isn’t soaking in the sights and sounds of her adopted country, how does she occupy her time? What are you supposed to do at site, anyway?

For decoding the nitty gritty of the volunteer experience, please consult this cheat sheet of five daily doings in Peace Corps South Africa:
Read the rest of this entry